Friday, August 19, 2011

Thank you Aunty Hazel!

On a recent visit down south, my sister handed me a Tim Tam box. Kids were deflated when they found out it wasn't full of chocolate, but it was Christmas for me!

Thank you, thank you Natalie and Miles' Aunty Hazel . Just look at the vintage goodness I was given:

 All acrylics except the green floral above. The ones below are more evening fabrics and will make great linings and clutches.
 And the buttons were a delight!
Better than an op shop find because it was so unexpected! Am looking forward to seeing them made up.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Need an excuse to go shopping? We have 10!

Last week we filled a custom made order for a bag. The realisation didn't hit me until after I received their thanks back for the gift. I knew the gift was for a present and that there was a particular date it was required by. I knew that cotton was perfect as was the preference for recycled fabric. I thought it was a birthday gift from husband to wife.
Instead I found out it was a 2nd Wedding Anniversary Gift. The traditional gift for 2nd Anniversaries is cotton. A bag was perfect. Our client looked at the styles of bags available and then the fabrics - choosing a bold retro print in a Grandma's tote style with bamboo handles:
The retro print came from a 70's cicular linen tablecloth. The fabric was cut with the grain so the design differs from the front and back of the bag. It was great to have had some recycled handles in my stash - ready to go.
Co-ordinating tan stripe on white sheeting (also recycled) was chosen for the lining - along with 3 pockets: pen/iphone/wallet, rickrack keyloop (the only new component) and vintage button trim. We called it the Burnt Retro Grandma's Tote.
Of course Bessie bags are perfect for 2nd anniversaries (as are our homewares and other ranges), especially for discerning consumers trying to reduce their eco-footprint. We also have some gorgeous contemporary cottons.
Even better news - Bessie bags are perfect for more anniversary presents:
3rd (Traditional)  Leather - we can source recycled handles for your fabric bag.
4th (Traditional)  Fruit and Flowers - why not buy something longlasting? A floral handbag (check out our vintage fabrics - there are loads of florals to chose from.)
5th (Traditional) Wood - we have some beautiful wooden handles sourced from op shops.
6th (Modern) Wood
7th (Traditional) Wool - some of our vintage fabrics are wool. Go for tweed or plaid.
8th (Modern) Linen and Lace - plenty of linen in stock as well as lace lined doilies (an example of how lace is incorporated in one of our latest designs.
9th (Modern) Leather
12th (Traditional) Silk/Linen - lots of silks too!
13th (Traditional) - Lace
So, 10 reasons to purchase a vintage fabric bag. On the otherhand,  because they can be eco-friendly and gorgeous - do you really need a reason?

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Pastels are for big girls too!

New towel: present for a new baby girl. Pink broderie anglaise applique.

New patchwork tote. Old and New fabrics called Big girls like pastels too. I considered selling it before it was made, but when Kate loved it too, I realised we had to have it. It will be mother - daughter shared.

Salvaged wooden rings from an op shop. Bias trim is brand new.

Corduroy sides and handles -my recycled cord jeans that I wore to bits. I love it that I can still wear it.

Old and new - salvaged embroidery, contemporary floral prints, plains from my stash and a gorgeous vintage "midcentury" pastel plastered tablecloth.

Kate plans to use it as an overnighter (It's big) and it will be perfect for work and play for me ;).

Friday, December 17, 2010

Vintage barkcloth salvaged for modern living

One of my favourite fabrics - vintage barkcloth rescued from an op shop - all torn up ready for rags. This Kokeshi bag has been reinforced with firm interfacing and lined with a repurposed calico curtain.

I love these vintage buttons as well. Probably older than the fabric itself! You can see the texture of the barkcloth from the cloe up photo below. How could someone dreamed of using it for cleaning!

I already own a Marbella (hobo style) bag made from this fabric, but I am glad I still have a few salvaged pieces left - it makes such a vibrant tote.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Discovered this beautiful gaudy barkcloth pillowcase this week. In such good condition......
I am not sure I can part with it. Perhaps I will pop in a pillow and just admire it for a while, and consider which style of bag to use.

I wonder what year it was created?

I am tickled that I found it in an opshop all forlorn. Much more fun and less pricey, as it's vibrancy would have snapped up by a dealer.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Calypso Drawstring

The latest little ditty bag - a drawstring just big enough for your thongs (or flip flops) so you can wear heels and still walk home!

Custom made for a birthday girl (lady), completed because of the birthday date the contemporary Happy Birthday Polka Dots from The Moda Collection spots, are lined with 80's floral and finished with upholestery fabric handles.

Here is the comment on Bessie's facebook: "I have just received a beautiful Bessie original as a gift and it is fun,funky, and well loved already, thanks".

With Christmas coming I have loads of bags running around in my head..ready for some time to be spend on the machine....

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Flutter in the City

I have just had the most wonderful long weekend away. It started in Brisbane - I had a couple of hours to while away so found myself in the West End, and scored some gorgeous op shop clothes for myself, including a very vintage, very pink sheer - but too pretty to be called a dressing gown- what are they called? Then it was time and husband of 15 years and I flew to beautiful Adelaide.

My first trip and I was not disappointed. I should have researched handmade and shops a little before we left I guess, but it was just too much fun exploring the city. I was gobsmacked with the button shop below. Walls of them ! Walls! Just no vintage... There were such a variety of shops in Rundle Mall, and we loved the asian food courts. SO good.

The next day saw us heading to the Central Market for breakfast. The Russian breakfast did not disappoint either. A huge omelette with 3 cold salads... Although nowhere near as big as Mebourne's Victoria Markets... the atmosphere was humming, prices fantastic (I wish I could buy mushrooms here for $5 per kilo) and choice...!

My excess could have been simply from the legumes....I had been searching for black beans since last year, although I am sure they are available North of Brisbane I just haven't come across them yet. Outside the Market we popped into an antique shop - bursting to the seams with beautiful crockery and cars, hats and dresses upstairs plus a collectable museum!!

Ahhhh, then the reason we headed down (besides our anniversary) was for our friend's birthday party in the Adelaide Hills. It was to our fortune that we stumbled on Paracombe Winery to ask for directions. Of course we had to sample some their beauties and admire their back paddock Kangaroos before we continued on.

We finished the party here, overlooking a gorgeous valley with ruins of a winery and pond below. It is an area we are keen to explore further with quaint pubs (and excellent grub), walks and so much more to see. Next time I will bring my list of handmade markets and opshops and perhaps even the kids!